By Mistaya Duhamel
In September, I had the opportunity to join a group of 14 other high school students from Revelstoke and Golden on a trip into Glacier National Park.
Why should you care about teenagers on a field trip? Because this program, the Glacier Adventure Stewardship Program or GASP, is more than just a day away from the classroom. As part of GASP, we give 15 hours of our time volunteering on stewardship projects or helping out in the community. Together we did over 225 hours of volunteer work in Revelstoke and Golden helping improve our environment, inspire local kids and make our communities a better place. For me, personally, being new to Revelstoke, it has been a great chance to meet new people and feel like part of the community.
While we all agree that volunteering is rewarding in itself, the Glacier trip was a great chance to get out in the park and spend a weekend hiking and getting to know each other. Based in the Alpine Club of Canada’s A.O. Wheeler hut, we learned trip planning and outdoor skills, and put them to the test out on the trails. We hiked over 30 km, most of which was in the pouring rain yet we returned to the hut in good spirits, to dry clothes and have hot chocolate. We also had Kip Wiley on hand to show us some photography skills – to capture the experience in a unique way.
GASP was a really great way for us to engage in the community, experience the wilderness in our backyards, and to leave behind the pressures of being a teenager. And now, we’d like to share some of our experiences with you, as viewed through the lens of a camera. Photographs taken during our trip to Glacier National Park will be on display at the Revelstoke Visual Arts Centre from November 3 – 24, 2017. Drop by on opening night from 6 – 9 p.m. and maybe you’ll catch the story of our late-night furry friend!
A big thank you to those who inspire us and make this event possible: partners Parks Canada, North Columbia Environmental Program, and Revelstoke Secondary School, and generous donations from Canadian Pacific Railway, Columbia Basin Trust, Revelstoke Community Foundation, TD Friends of the Environment Foundation.
Mistaya Duhamel is a Grade 10 student at Revelstoke Secondary School.